The course is mainly composed of lectures, practical activities in class, project assignments, a mid-term exam, and a literature review (for CPSC 584 only). Lecture slides will be posted in Canvas right before their corresponding class (see the Files folder).

Note that some assignments are due right before class, others are due later or on non-regular meeting days. There are no late days for the group assignments.

There are 11 class-activities planned in total for the semester. Each activity is 3pts, so students need to participate in at least 8 activities to obtain full points on this component of their course evaluation (assuming they get the full points on all 8 activities). Students may very well do more activities than they need to reach the 24pts corresponding to in-class activities. No matter how many activities they complete, the 8 in-class activities with the top grade will be considered for their final course grade.

The books referenced in the schedule as complementary readings (see the “Comp. Reading” column in the table) are available through the Yale University Library. In particular, the two books below are available online:

This other one can be borrowed from the library:


Date Day Topic Class Activity Assignment Comp. Reading
Jan 16 Tu Introduction. Why care about design?
January 18 Th History of HCI. Methods: Design thinking, qualitative data analysis RMiHCI, Ch. 11
January 23 Tu Methods: Improvisation and Brainstorming. Introduction to Ethnography. Brainstorm ideas for semester-long project (submit to Gradescope) RMiHCI, Ch. 3
January 25 Th Methods: Contextual Inquiry CD, Ch. 3: Principles of Contextual Inquiry
January 30 Tu Methods: Interviews Create contextual inquiry / interview script for project (submit to Gradescope)
February 1 Th Methods: Task, Personas & Scenarios
February 6 Tu Methods: Storyboarding Create a storyboard for your project (submit to canvas) Assignment 1. Design Research & Initial Ideation (what problem space to work on? who to create it for?)
February 8 Th Software infrastructure for interactive display.
February 13 Tu Methods: Low fidelity prototyping. Intro to Figma.
February 15 Th More about Figma. Wireframes (submit to canvas)
February 20 Tu Methods: Heuristic evaluation. Assignment 2. Low-fi prototype (how to create it?) RMiHCI, Ch. 10
February 22 Th Methods: More on Heuristic Eval Practice heuristic evaluation in class 584: Milestone for small literature review is due
February 26 Mo Not a regular class day; Assignment is due Assignment 3 (Part I) is due through Gradescope.
February 27 Tu Methods: Usability testing
February 29 Th Methods: More on usability testing & experiments Collaboration
March 1 Fr No class; Group assignment due date Assignment 3 (Part II) is due through Gradescope
March 5 Tu Invited talk via zoom: Chayan Sarkar (Scientist, TCS Research) In-class activity about invited talk. RMiHCI, Ch. 13
March 7 Th Midterm
March 13 We Spring Recess
March 15 Fr Spring Recess
March 20 We Spring Recess
March 24 Su Spring Recess
March 26 Tu Programming tips for the interactive display (Gemini LLM)
March 28 Th More programming tips for the interactive display
April 2 Tu Methods: High-fidelity prototyping
April 4 Th Ather Sharif (PhD student, UW) In-class activity about invited talk.
April 9 Tu Methods: Modeling users & Data Visualization
April 10 Wed No class; Group assignment due date Assignment 4. Prototype System Milestone (due at 8pm)
April 11 Th Design of everyday things DoET, Ch. 6: The Design Challenge
April 12 Fri No class; Group assignment due date 584: Small Literature Review (CPSC 584 only; due at 8pm)
April 16 Tu Last minute debugging tips for interactive display Ideate plan for video presentation (submit to canvas).
April 18 Th Qian Yang (Assistant professor in Information Science at Cornell) In-class activity about invited talk.
April 23 Tu Test system prototype on TV (don't go to the classroom, but go to your project's TV)
April 24 Wed No class; Group assignment due date Assignment 5. Final Prototype System (due at 1pm)
April 25 Th Live project demos Rate other projects during class!
April 30 Tu Reading period begins
May 1 We No class; Group assignment due date Assignment 6. User Testing and Video Presentation.